How will the retail sector fare without Sunday shopping?

Szymon Łukasik, Head of the Retail Department at Cresa Poland

Sunday shopping ban will hit everyone, not only retailers and tenants. Businesses providing services to shopping centres will also need to prepare for upcoming changes; they will probably renegotiate rents and cut headcount - says Szymon Łukasik, Head of the Retail Department at Cresa Poland.

Szymon Łukasik, expert of Cresa Poland:

In a couple of weeks from now, retailers will be allowed to open stores only on the first and last Sunday of a month. An almost complete ban on Sunday trading will take effect in 2020. How will it affect the retail market in Poland? 

The new regulations on trading to take effect on 1 March 2018 will have a major impact on consumer shopping habits. In Poland, large-scale retail schemes have always been open on Sundays, except for public and church holidays. This change will interfere with the freedom of choice. If you, as a customer, believe that shopping on Sundays is against your beliefs, don’t do it. 

This is a more complex issue. It’s not just retail sector employees that work on Sundays. For many retailers, Sunday is the second busiest trading day after Saturday on which they record the highest turnover. If you take that day away from them, they will see their turnover levels drop and only partially spread over weekdays.

F&B businesses can go online only with part of their service. Modern shopping centres are expanding their F&B offers to attract ever more customers. Even if F&B establishments are permitted to operate on Sundays, their Sunday turnover will be much lower than that on those days when retail stores are open.

Businesses providing services to shopping centres will also have to prepare for changes. It’s likely that they will be forced to renegotiate rates and reduce headcount. Everyone will bear the consequences of the ban and it won’t be a change for the better.

Apart from that, retailers planning to enter the Polish market will have to take account of the ban, because it will be difficult to estimate projected turnover levels in this new situation.

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